Thousands of jobless North Carolinians have been waiting for several weeks to get their first unemployment check. State officials say they hope to have that back-log under control this month.
Assistant Commerce Secretary Dale Folwell heads the employment agency responsible for making sure the unemployed get their checks.
“Anytime there’s one case in our backlog, that’s one too many," said Folwell.
But the complaints keep coming. There are about 12,800 backlogged unemployment claims. These are people Folwell says have had to wait more than three weeks to receive an initial payment.
“Of the people where there is no flag on the field, there is no backlog. For the people where there is an issue that’s been raised, all of the November cases are off, all of the December cases have been assigned to adjudicators and now we’re starting to work on the January cases," said Folwell.
One third of the backlogged cases are considered “employed-but-laid-off.” These are people who were furloughed because of the wintry weather.